There are two things that make the Upper Franconian town of Küps pretty remarkable, castles and festivals. On the whole, Küps is just an ordinary town with some extraordinary architecture and good eats (I mean shopping).
I don’t know which castle to ask you to see first. So, I wrote them down on a piece of paper and threw a dart; landing on the Wasserschloss Tüschnitz.
Let me start by saying this particular castle isn’t standing anymore. The only thing left is the outline of the foundation. Its tower was here back in the 14th century, so it truly was a medieval castle (with a moat no less).
Archaeologists have found that the former Castle Tüschnitz was (is) connected to the Upper Castle of House Schemenau, a half-timbered structure dating to 1540.
Hmm, I could only speculate as the late night, clandestine meetings that the passageway led to. Maybe I should make up a story & write a book. (Hey, don’t steal my idea, OK? ;-)
There might not be a Lower Castle, but there is a New Castle. There was a castle here prior, but it was destroyed during the Peasants’ War.
The Jagdschloss is next on the list, a hunting lodge that was under siege during the Thirty Years’ War in 1625 (successfully, I might add).
Don’t go anywhere yet, there are still two more castles to go.
You can’t see the inside of Castle Schmölitz (it’s a private home), but the outside of this medieval original is worth it. This castle too was destroyed during the Peasants’ Revolt in the early 1500’s.
Be transported from medieval Germany to the 19th century English countryside when you see the Schloss Oberlangenstadt. This is a Gothic-style castle whose interior is like a historical United Nations with Rococo, Spanish, Moorish, and French designs.
Folks lucky enough to secure a reservation (there are only 5 rooms) at the Old Guard can spend the night at the 13th century Old Castle.
You’ll be glad you stayed the night if you’re here during one of Küps’ festivals and markets. I’ll double check to make sure I listed them all. ;-)
The Spring Market falls at the end of April/beginning of May, followed by the Mountain Festival and the Patron’s Market (both in July), the Craft Fair falls in September, and the Autumn Market hits in the middle of October. Last, by certainly no means least, is the obligatory Christmas Market on the 2nd Sunday of December.
All of Küps’ markets are filled with lots of music and scrumptious regional dishes. Better to keep up your strength to see the Franconian Forest Nature Park.
I think I found my little piece of heaven…